On Wed, Oct 03, 2007 at 02:00:03PM -0400, Edward W. Porter wrote: > From what you say below it would appear human-level AGI would not require > recursive self improvement, [...] > A lot of people on this list seem to hang a lot on RSI, as they use it, > implying it is necessary for human-level AGI.
Nah. A few people have suggested that an extremely-low IQ "internet worm" that is capable of modifying its own code might be able to ratchet itself up to human intelligence levels. In-so-far as it "modifies its own code", its RSI. First, I don't tink such a thing is likely. Secondly, even if its likely, one can implement an entirely equivalent thing that doesn't actually "self modify" in this way, by using e.g. scheme or lisp, or even with the proper stuructures, in C. I think that, at this level, talking about "code that can modify itself" is smoke-n-mirrors. Self-modifying code is just one of many things in a programmer's kit bag, and there are plenty of equivalenet formulations that don't actually require changing source code and recompiling. Put it this way: if I were an AGI, and I was prohibited from recompiling my own program, I could still emulate a computer with pencil and paper, and write programs for my pencil-n-paper computer. (I wouldn't use pencil-n-paper, of course, I'd "do it in my head"). I might be able to do this pencil-paper emulatation pretty danged fast (being AGI and all), and then re-incorporate those results back into my own thinking. In fact, I might choose to do all of my thinking on my pen-n-paper emulator, and, since I was doing it all in my head anyway, I might not bother to tell my creator that I was doing this. (which is not to say it would be undetectable .. creator might notice that an inordinate amount of cpu time is being used in one area, while other previously active areas have gone dormant). So a prohibition from modifying one's own code is not really much of a prohibition at all. --linas p.s. The Indian mathematician Ramanujan seems to have managed to train a set of neurons in his head to be a very fast symbolic multiplier/divider. With this, he was able to see vast amounts (six volumes worth before dying at age 26) of strange and interesting relationships between certain equations that were otherwise quite opaque to other human beings. So, "running an emulator in your head" is not impossible, even for humans; although, admitedly, its extremely rare. ----- This list is sponsored by AGIRI: http://www.agiri.org/email To unsubscribe or change your options, please go to: http://v2.listbox.com/member/?member_id=8660244&id_secret=49514235-ad4bd3